Atletico Madrid boss Diego Simeone calls for an energetic display against Arsenal
Last Updated: 02/05/18 11:19pm
Diego Simeone says his Atletico Madrid team are not thinking about the Europa League semi-final second leg possibly being Arsene Wenger's final European match at Arsenal.
The tie is finely poised at 1-1 after last week's first leg and defeat would mean Arsenal missing out on Champions League qualification for the second campaign in a row, just as Wenger's 22-year reign comes to an end.
Simeone said: "We are not thinking about Wenger's last season at Arsenal, only about what we need.
"We need to see a full stadium, the excitement of our players, the energy in the team, that's what matters to us."
Simeone was sent to the stands in last week's opening game in London and the Argentinean will serve a touchline ban in the second leg.
"I'll take it badly," he said.
"I'm sad about this situation and I'll have to improve. I better shut up."
Atletico have, however, been boosted by the return of two key players as forward Diego Costa is available again after a hamstring injury and defender Filipe Luis could also feature, after recovering quickly from a broken leg.
"Diego lives off his power and in every match his contribution is huge," Simeone said.
"Filipe has been out for two months. He's not playing 90 minutes but, if I call on him, he will respond. Many games are played with the heart as well as the legs."
Atletico have not lost at home in La Liga all season and managed to get a draw at the Emirates last week despite playing with 10 men for much of the match.
But Simeone remains wary of Arsenal and said: "They have great players and a great coach.
"They have great players between the lines like (Mesut) Ozil. They have a lot of speed in the final third.
"On their most important days, they always manage to play better. To get here you have to be a good team and Arsenal are."